Eating Authors: Adam Christopher

1 Comment » Written on March 25th, 2013 by
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Adam Christopher

Honestly, I don’t understand where this month has gone. Time has gotten somewhat wonky, as evidenced by the calendar’s insistence that it’s now Springtime despite significant amounts of snow piling up throughout the United States. I think we need a “reset” and so I’ll be using this week’s installment of EATING AUTHORS to bounce us back and forth across the equator in an effort to restore the weather to its proper place. All of which is a rather lame setup and segue to today’s author guest, Adam Christopher.

Originally from Auckland, and the winner of the Sir Julius Vogel award (New Zealand’s highest prize for science fiction) for his work in editing a Doctor Who Fan Club publication, Adam relocated to North West England in 2006 where he promptly began writing superhero novels for Angry Robot. His third such book, The Age Atomic, comes out tomorrow. And while a fourth book, Hang Wire, is expected later this year, he’ll be making the jump from superheroes to space opera with a new work from Tor, coming in March of 2014.

LMS: Welcome, Adam. So let’s talk food. Tell me about your most memorable meal

AC: I totally like food. Let’s be clear. In fact, between the ages of about eight and maybe twelve, my life’s ambition was to be a chef. Which was something of a change from my previously desired occupation, that of a truck driver. However, I soon discovered that while I like the eating of food, the cooking of it is something of a drag. I don’t have that gene, or personality trait, or whatever it is that controls your level of interest in pots and pans and herbs and spices and whether or not the pasta is al dente or not. Cooking, sad to say, bores me.

Which is why I like eating out. And I especially like eating out in the United States, because one thing I missed after moving to the UK from New Zealand several years ago was the food. That’s not to say that the American eating experience is particularly similar to that found in New Zealand, but the two countries share certain culinary tropes, like maple syrup on bacon and a keen interest in things grilled to a crisp in the outdoors.

My most memorable meal was really a modest, if tasty, affair in New York City, and I have no doubt that there will be some serious eye-rolling in a moment, but bear with me. This magnificent and important meal took place at Goodburger on Lexington Avenue, just a couple of blocks from the Waldorf Astoria, where my wife and I were staying for the US launch of my debut novel, Empire State.

The Age Atomic
Seven Wonders
Empire State

That night was near the end of our week in Manhattan. I’d done a reading at the New York Public Library, I’d hung out with my agent and my publisher. I had meetings and drinks and more meetings. We saw the sights and froze on the top of the Empire State Building (it was minus ten at ground level, which will give you some idea of how cold it was). We were staying at a nice hotel (which, I should point out, was having a huge sale on rooms when we booked, otherwise there was no way we’d have ended up at the Waldorf Astoria). It was, all-in-all, everything I wanted to do and be as a writer.

We had a lot of fun. We were also totally exhausted by the end of the week, and what we wanted was something quick and easy and delicious for dinner. After trawling through the menus of a dozen or more Manhattan restaurants, we decided to flag it and just go for a walk to see what we could find.

What we found was Goodburger. It’s a burger joint, a chain with five stores in NYC. It was empty but it was close to the hotel, which meant we could escape frostbite by not walking too far. We had burgers and fries and their in-house root beer, and I remember there was a local new program on the TV set in the corner near the ceiling, a set that had utterly awful reception in the way that only televisions in fast-food joints can somehow manage.

It was brilliant. American readers may not appreciate this, but really, the best place in the entire world to get a burger is in the US – seriously, you have no idea what you’re sitting on there – and it’s possible that on that cold winter’s night, the Lexington Avenue branch of Goodburger produced the very best burgers that had ever been made in the whole entire history of human civilization. Well, it’s possible. In any case, we had our burgers, we got warm, and for an hour or so we reflected on what had been a wonderful week in New York. I was a published author, with a book launch at the New York Public Library. Life was good.

And so was the burger.

Thanks, Adam. Few things in life our as satisfying as a good burger.

Next Monday: Another author and another meal!

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